Does prickly heat make your life a living hell every summer? Not anymore! We’ll tell you how to nix it the bud and keep your cool.
You’re ready for summer. Halter sundress, suntan lotion, chicklit novel, oversized sunglasses…check. Lolling on a striped deckchair sipping a delish cocktail, all’s well with the world till that blasted itching starts. Before you know it, your chest and back are covered in a fine mesh of angry, red bumps. You, my dear have what medical parlance calls Miliaria, and you better know as prickly heat.
It’s a classic reaction to the sun for many; hot weather can block sweat ducts and trap sweat under the skin surface causing that feeling of fire ants crawling on your skin. In case you’re interested, the ants (sorry rash) comes in two forms; Miliaria Crystallina, clear, pinpoint blisters that look like small beads of sweat, and Miliaria Rubra, red itchy and inflamed rashes caused by trapped sweat. As dermatologist Dr. Abhijit Desai explains, “When sweat ducts get obstructed, sweat leaks into the skin, inflaming the areas around the leakage. A prickly rash appears with red, very itchy little bumps (papules).” Skin folds and covered body parts are most at risk, he adds.
So, how’s a girl to look cool and collected in the sun when her body is on fire? Wear loose cotton clothes and exfoliate your skin daily with a gentle, soothing formula, like Bottega Di Lungavita Linfa Age Gentle Bath & Shower Gel With Aloe, Orange Blossom And Yarrow. It’s a good idea to keep some cooling wet wipes like Kara Hand Sanitizing Wet Wipes With Triclosan And Aloe Vera (10 Wipes) handy to swipe down sweaty areas while out and about. These wonder wipes contain powerful antibacterial and soothing ingredients to banish bacteria before it builds up under skin.
Keeping your skin cool in the throes of a prickly heat crisis is the key to fixing the problem. Stay indoors in a cool airconditioned room. Avoid scrubbing your body with harsh soaps. Wrap some ice cubes in a soft muslin cloth and pat on skin. Avoid scratching as far as possible and if you must, tap—never scratch—the offending area. You could also try applying non-greasy Mantra Aloe & Cucumber After Sun Moisturizer that calms and soothes skin that reduces sun damage, or The Nature's Co. Aloe Vera After Sun Gel that cools and soothes sun exposed skin. And then there’s our SOS go-to, Avene Thermal Spring Water. Spritz on for some instant cooling   
There are home remedies aplenty too.
  • Baking Soda tops the list of tried and tested DIYs: Mix one tablespoon of baking soda in a bucket of water. Pour over your body and let it air dry.
  • Or you could apply pure Aloe Vera pulp to the scratchy areas and leave on for 20 minutes.
  • Sandalwood is legion; mix equal parts coriander and sandalwood powder with two or three tablespoons of rose water to make a paste. Smear over the affected area and let dry. Rinse with cold water and pat dry.
  • Oatmeal is a proven skin soother too. Powder a handful of dry oats and add to your bathwater. If that sounds too messy, simply use Tjori Deep Nourishing Mint and Oats Scrub.
  • Cooling Multani mitti or Fuller’s Earth mixed with hydrating and soothing Rose Water is also a well-known remedy. Make your own skin cooler with The Nature's Co. Fullers Earth Face Pack and Kama Ayurveda Pure Rose Water.